Āryāvarta

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The approximate extent of the Vedic period Āryāvarta is highlighted in pale yellow

Āryāvarta (Sanskrit: "abode of the Indo-Aryan peoples", Sanskrit pronunciation: [aːɾjaːˈʋəɾtə]) is the name for present-day Pakistan, North India and part of Bengal in classical Sanskrit literature.

Classical sources[edit]

The Manusmṛti (2.22) gives the name to "the tract between the Himalaya and the Vindhya ranges, from the Eastern (Bay of Bengal) to the Western Sea (Arabian Sea)".[1][2]

The Vasistha Dharma Sutra I.8-9 and 12-13 locates the Āryāvarta to the east of the disappearance of the Sarasvati River in the desert, to the west of the Kālakavana, to the north of the Pariyatra Mountains and the Vindhya Range and to the south of the Himalayas.[3]

The Baudhayana Dharmasutra (BDS) 1.1.2.10 gives similar definitions and declares that Āryāvarta is the land that lies west of Kālakavana, east of Adarsana, south of the Himalayas and north of the Vindhyas, but in BDS 1.1.2.11 Āryāvarta is confined to the doab of the Ganges-Yamuna, and BDS 1.1.2.13-15. Patanjali's Mahābhāṣya[citation needed] defines Āryāvarta like the Vasistha Dharmasutra.

Some sutras recommend expiatory acts for those who have crossed the boundaries of Āryāvarta. The Baudhayana Shrauta Sutra recommends this for those who have crossed the boundaries of Āryāvarta and ventured into far away places.[citation needed]

The Gurjara-Pratihara king in the tenth century was titled the Maharajadhiraja of Aryavarta.[4]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Gopal, Madan (1990). K.S. Gautam, ed. India through the ages. Publication Division, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India. p. 70. 
  2. ^ Michael Cook (2014), Ancient Religions, Modern Politics: The Islamic Case in Comparative Perspective, Princeton University Press, p.68: "Aryavarta [...] is defined by Manu as extending from the Himalayas in the north to the Vindhyas of Central India in the south and from the sea in the west to the sea in the east."
  3. ^ Neelis 2010, p. 194.
  4. ^ André Wink (2002). Al-Hind: Early medieval India and the expansion of Islam, 7th-11th centuries. BRILL. p. 284. ISBN 978-0-391-04173-8. 

Bibliography[edit]